Talitha Bakker - Endurance

Talitha Bakker from ASE Endurance Team

Country of Residence: The Netherlands
Discipline: Endurance

How many horses do you have?

Best thing about your horses?
My horses are all homebred. Most of them already second or third generation. This makes that I know them all through and through. When the day comes to finally start riding them, I just put the saddle on and ride away. The trust has built over the years and they all have a big will to please which makes them so easy to work with. When you finally finish that first FEI ride after seven years of waiting, it feels extra special.

What keeps you motivated?
I must admit that especially in the winter time it is hard to keep your motivation. One time I went out with my stallion, doing four hours of riding, just in walk. We always do this when we start them up after a winter rest. The problem was that it was -10C and when I got off my horse after four hours, I had light signs of hypothermia. Next time I went out, I went in a ski-outfit what was a much better choice. Then, when the first races start, it reminds you why you hold on during those long cold months. The feeling to finish well with your horse is just amazing and keeps you motivated for the rest of the season!

What advice can you give to those who are new to the sport?
Start at the base. Make sure you horse is fit and happy and is up to date with the chiropractor and Farrier. Work on your dressage so your horse uses its body accordingly and then start with endurance training. You will see that everything will go easier when the basics are 100%.

What is your favourite Zilco product and why?
My favourite product is the deluxe SS bridle as it is so easy in use and my horses are very comfortable with it.